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Sacraments Elders

The Role

A sacraments elder is a full member of a community of faith who has been licensed by the regional council to administer the sacraments within their community of faith, which is without a settled or appointed member of the order of ministry or designated lay minister. When a congregation is in need, it may identify and invite those who have gifts and interests for becoming a sacraments elder to act in this capacity once they have received the required training which is provided by the Regional Council.

Canadian Shield sacraments elders are re-licensed annually for the pastoral year, from  July 1 to June 30.  The current application period is for July 1, 2023 to June 30, 2024.


Policies and Proceedures

The policies and procedures of The United Church of Canada exist to support the church in living out God’s mission in the world. Some communities of faith do not regularly celebrate the sacraments because no licensed minister is available to preside. The sacraments elder policies and procedures are one way of ensuring that each community of faith can celebrate its sacramental life by licensing trained lay members of the United Church to administer the sacraments within their own community of faith.

Sacraments Elders Handbook

The policy and procedures for sacrament elders are found in the UCC resource Sacraments Elders Handbook – January 2020 [ PDF | 47 pages]


Sacraments Elder Training

Canadian Shield Regional Council requires that all lay people wishing to become a Sacraments Eldar for their community of faith do mandatory training. Please remember that this training is only one part of the process. Your community of faith will also need to apply to the Canadian Shield Regional Council to have you licensed. This training is offered periodically throughout the year.  Please contact Rob Smith (below) for more information on when our next training session will take place.

Community of Faith Request Application

This application is the formal request of the pastoral charge for the appointment/re-appointment of a sacraments elder.

Please note:  sacraments elders DO NOT  complete this application


Sacraments Elder Request Application


Staff Support

Robert Smith

Robert Smith

Pastoral Relations Minister

Phone: 1-833-236-0281 Ext. 3
Email: rsmith@united-church.ca

Serves in: Canadian Shield Regional Council

Location: Teleworks and works in the Thunder Bay Office.

Role: Rob encourages and supports ministry personnel toward health, joy, and excellence in ministry practice.

Contact Rob about: Conflict Resolution; Finding A New Minister; Licensed Lay Worship Leaders; Licenses To Administer Sacraments; Pastoral Relationships Policy; Resources for Transition Times; Retirement; Sabbaticals; Sick Leave; Short Term Supply Ministers; Visiting Minister Options.

More about Rob...